"It is neither near nor far."
I know you posted this 3 months ago, but for anyone else around "nai" isn't just a conjugation suffix, it's actually an i-adjective! The "ku" on chikaku/tooku makes them nouns and putting the article "mo" after near/far and then nai basically says "Near and far are both nonexistent" With "Nai" being the descriptor for the nouns near and far.
Close, but the ku ending doesn't change adjectives into nouns, it's closer to an adverb. But it always has to be kept in mind that Japanese does not have nouns and adjectives as in English, we have just tried to explain Japanese through the terminology in English, and that's the closest we can get
In the translation it says, "neither, nor". That is basically what the two "mo" particles represent in the negative.
"Chigaku mo..." = "It is neither near..." "Tooku mo (nai)..." = "...nor far." And "desu" makes it polite.
It is similar in French when you form a negative. You need 2 negative particles to complete the sentence - e.g. "Je ne sais pas." ne + sais/jamais/rien= negative. Or in the "neither/nor" scenario, you use "ni" twice if I remember correctly. It has been a while since I practice French haha. (-:
what I understand is that も means 'too' or 'also'. when attached to two words, either nouns, adjectives or adverbs, it is used to express equality or similarity. ex. 犬も猫も好きです。I like both dogs and cats.
because the sentence here is negative, も gets the equivalent of 'neither' and 'nor' in English.
I'm still new to Japanese so please correct me if I'm wrong.
That sounds about right, but I am still fairly new to understanding all the nuances of Japanese particles myself, haha. But, yes, "mo" means "too/also/as well as" in the positive but I think it also leaves room for adding things. Like, "I like both dogs and cats (as well as some other animals that I haven't mentioned yet)", instead of saying, "I ONLY like dogs and cats (and no other animals)".
Also I've been trying to find this thread for a while now because as soon as I commented the first time and got off, I realized I misspelled "chikaku" as "chigaku" ;n;
Here's a wiki on Japanese particles that I just found. It may be helpful to anyone confused about this, or any other particle usage!" http://lingwiki.com/index.php?title=Japanese_particles
i adjectives in their negative form end with くない (kunai). Because you're combining two negatives in a "both... and" format you use the ない only once (sort of like how we can use"tall" once in the sentence "my tall brothers and tall sisters played basketball in college" => "my tall brothers and sisters played basketball in college") and it looks like
with も meaning "both... and" and く。。。くない meaning [negative], this translates to
"Both [adj.1] [negative] and [adj.2] [negative]"
which, as an English speaker, would be given:
"Neither [adj.1] nor [adj.2]."
From what I gathered, if you use the lesson that goes along with this section it describes how the adjectives that end in い change when made into the negative. That's why you see く in its stead. If you're on mobile then the lesson will not be available so be sure to use a PC when you have time to sit down and study! Best of luck~
Neither near nor far it is
AもBも sentence construction.
both A and B; A as well as B; neither A nor B (in a negative sentence).
The ない only makes the sentence negative (neither/nor), its not a word in and of itself, when translated to English.
Unless you'd rather translate it to "Both near and far not it is".
Who knows, maybe that's how the Japanese parse it, but its not how we say it. Translation is rarely clean.
Hi Viktor, This is actually right as well! Because of the structure negative of adjectives;.
近い goes to ちかくない 遠い goes to 遠くない... The い marks it as an い-adjective (except for a few cases). As for the な-adjective, the negative is with ではありません/ではない.
Your structure is complete! Although rarely used even in formal situations, when would only add です at the ending.
So: 近くないです 近くありません are both valid formal answers, although the first is more common used in formal speach, while the second (when used) is in writing.